Saturday, March 31, 2018

riding dirty

How izzit we've never tried this?

That thought was running through my head as Magnum and I went on a recreational adventure.  We went mountain biking.  For the first time.

Blame Wolfgang, I suppose.

Naturally, living near all these Rocky Mountains, mountain biking is as ubiquitous as alpine skiing.  But honestly, it's never really appealed to me.  We've come across mountain bikers while out hiking, and it just looked like an awkward struggle.  Or I'd see videos, and it looked like crazy on wheels.

One day, not too long ago, Wolfgang brought home a top-of-line full suspension mountain bike he'd rented. 

"Go ahead, try this", he said to me, knowing of my apathy.

Okay, whatever.  I got on and bounced around the street in front of our house.  Immediately I felt the difference.  Oh, I realized.  Mountain biking might actually be a fun thing.

Lo and behold, it is!

It was a beautiful spring day on Friday, so Mag and I decided to rent us some real bikes and go a-mountain biking.  After looking at different trail options, we ruled out anything that said "family friendly" as well as anything that said "highly technical".  We ended up settling on a nice longish intermediate trail that Wolfgang recommended.

I spent about two minutes getting some online tips, and then we headed to the bike shop.

It was way fun.  It was also work in a lot of areas, and got tricky in places.  But it was just challenging enough to leave us wanting more.  Like skiing, perhaps?  Or crack?

We stopped to rest and get a couple of pics after a particularly challenging ascent.

smiley for the double selfie

how I was actually feeling

And in many ways, going downhill was even more difficult.  But we both made it through the entire course without a crash despite several "almosts".  In some ways, I think maybe we were too cautious.  Seems like at least one of us should have bit it at some point.  Maybe I should have at least embellished one of the almost-crashes, to make the day complete.

Until next time...

Thursday, March 29, 2018

beyond words

"I want a life where I can grow old with you..."

He wanted to sit close to me at the beach and "watch the waves and the sounds of waters".  Can he see sound?  Oh, never mind.  It was all so romantic, even if biologically improbable.

"I want to be with you when the sun shines till it set..."

My lover and I met as many do.  We were matched together by the powers that be.  It was out of our control, really.

"I want to watch the rainbows with you and count the star with you..."

Hmmm... just count the one star?  Oh well, at least the rainbows are plural. 

"I just wish to have the best of love with you"

Gosh, me too.  Sadly, however, it wasn't meant to be.  Really, it ended almost as it was just starting.  I don't even know what happened.  We'd been getting along so well, we were so right for each other.  He would make a move, then I would respond perfectly, the tension building with neither of us knowing what the next encounter would bring.

Until... until...


Dude!  I'm just here to play Words With Friends.  And I actually prefer to play Words With Friends with strangers because the app does a good job of matching me with similarly skilled opponents.  And when I play with actual friends, I find I don't try as hard unless they're beating the crap out of me, so I'm just here to play Words With Friends with strangers!  I'm not here to grow old or count a star, etc.!

Plus, if you want me to go to the beach with you and watch the sounds of waters, I'd prefer you didn't have a bug-eyed cat as your profile pic... not that I'm that trusting of profile pics in general, but no bug-eyed cats, K?

...He was good at Words With Friends, though.  Damnit.

Good luck to him.

Maybe next time.


Linking up with Mama Kat this week for the prompt:
1. Write a blog post that ends with the line: maybe next time.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

wish you were here

Spring break - woooooo, we're rippin' it!

Okay, actually so far, I've spent most of spring break going up and down the interstate, but it's all good.

We got Wolfgang moved up north late last week, and that trip was bookended by a band trip Meego took to Disneyland.  At least someone in the family is having a proper vacation.

We had to get Meego to the Denver airport at 3:30am on Thursday.  Is 3:30am early morning, or still nighttime?  It's kind of a grey area.  But he made it right on time - not like there's much traffic at that time.

They returned Sunday night/Monday morning at about 1:00am.  Again, not a whole lot of "rush hour" going on.

As expected, the kids had a good time.  They marched in the Disney parade, but really it was mostly a way to go play in L.A. and Disneyland for four fun-filled days.

I did not chaperone the trip.  It sounded too much like work.

I asked Meego if there was any trip drama, and he said there was none that he knew of other than some "Chaperone drama".  Apparently one of the chaperones was a bit uptight, but we'll just leave it at that because she lives about two houses away from us...

I've heard they did a nice job at the parade and "represented the school well".  The dress code for the trip created some frowns - for instance the requirement for "tasteful" sleep and swimwear.  One that caught my eye was the requirement that everyone wear "jeans with no holes".  I don't think any of the girls owned jeans with  no holes prior to the trip.  They pay good money for those holey jeans.

I have not been able to get any pics or videos of their parade performance, however.  Geez, how hard is it to get a bootleg footage from a Disney performance?! (quite difficult).  So I can only imagine the thrilling expressions as in the photo above from a football game - same enthusiasm as a Disney parade, I'm sure.

Mom Life at Denver International

Spring break continues for the rest of this week.  With all that driving and moving and packing and  unpacking behind us, we can get down to some wild times! some spring cleaning and car maintenance.  Time to defrost that freezer too, I guess.

Whachu doing?  Wish you were here.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

cruising with Pablo

Wolfgang has left the nest.  Again.

He'd been living back at home since last summer while considering his employment options.  He had an engineering internship that continued after he graduated last spring, but he wasn't really feeling the love for a long term position at the company.

But at least they have a fun bowling team and an annual chili cook-off...

In the meantime, he's been living the good life of free room and board at our place while perusing job openings and such.  He landed a position at a firm a couple of hours away from us, secured an apartment, and move-in day was yesterday.

Wolfgang rented a U-haul and got all packed up, but one issue remained.  What to do with Pablo?

Pablo is Wolfgang's lovable 1989 Toyota 4-speed pickup.  He's a spunky little reliable truck that has been a faithful companion for two or three years.  He hasn't spent a lot of time on the highway, however.

Pablo - stud

Luckily, it's spring break for me, and Magnum also had yesterday off.  We could help Wolfgang move - yipee.  After considering some options, we decided that Wolf would drive the U-haul, Magnum would drive Ellie Mae (our awesome Honda Element), and it would be Pablo and me to round out the convoy.

Honestly, I had my misgivings.  How would Pablo do on such a long (for him) trip?  What about Monument Hill?  All those sustained RPMs?

We got the U-haul loaded up and headed out, with me checking to make sure I had my AAA card handy...

But that little chicken truck?  He was AWESOME!

He just hummed along - up Monument Hill, hardly needing a breath.  Through the crap traffic of Denver, then further up the open road to the new home.  I could almost feel his joy of the wind in his hair!(?)

I was alone with Pablo for the trip, and he was loud.  He was loud because he was built before sound insulation was much of a consideration for cars.  Even with the windows rolled up, I could hear the wind rushing past us and the sounds of other cars going by.  It was way cool!

But I could also hear Pablo's engine, it was happily purring the whole way, not a sputter to be heard.  At about 50 miles from our destination, I saw the odometer roll over to 188K miles.  The trip only used a quarter of a tank.

with Pablo -
the first to arrive at the destination

We got Wolfgang all moved in and stocked him up with a few groceries and such.  It's a nice new beginning, and I'll miss having Pablo... er... Wolfgang around.

Linking up with Mama Kat for the prompt:
6. Write about the last thing that surprised you

Sunday, March 18, 2018

bang time

It's banging season again, AKA winter percussion time.  We attended the regional competition yesterday.

Some might recall that Meego's group was the state chamPEENS last year.  This year's scores aren't quite on the same line, but I think the kids are having fun anyways.

It's a judged competition, and I don't get too caught up in the standings.  It's just pretty entertaining most of the time.

One of the groups had a "hillbilly" theme and broke out the moonshine jugs, bow saw, jaw harps, washboard, and spoons.  I think they were my favorite.

Another group depicted this crazy violent barbarian theme.  A cymbal player fell down during a crossover, but the whole show was so violent and chaotic, it fit right in.  I know they were having fun!  The first place group was dressed like Keebler elves.  Their show was also quite creative as they banged on various wooden things.  Later we learned that they were supposed to be trees...

At times, it all seems a bit overdone to me, but it's nice the artsy kids have something to occupy them during the winter months.  There is also winter guard - indoor flag and rifle competition.  Meego's girlfriend is active in that, and Meego was telling me about some of the obnoxious mom volunteers.

"Are you sure you should eat that much?", and such, during team lunches.

This is why I'll help out here and there but don't sign up for any boards or committees at this level...

In other news, it's been a good week.  I sold some stuff today on craigslist in about two hours, which tells me I could've asked for more money.  But really I'm glad to have it gone.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

a new find and no surprises

"That's kinda creepy"

"Okay, but other than 'creepy', what are your thoughts?"

Thinking... thinking... thinking...  All I could think was "creepy"

Magnum and I joined a different gym last weekend.  It's cheaper than the high-falutin' gym we'd belonged to, and it's located right in our neighborhood.  The high-falutin' place is nice, and the high price is justified because it has a lot of amenities we never utilized.  So far, I like the new place.

As part of our membership, we get two free 3D body scans along with a "fitness profile" generated by the scan.

Welp, okay.

So I had my initial 3D scan fitness profile earlier this week.  I managed to find my way to the women's locker room and then find the scanner/advisor person.

The whole procedure didn't really tell me anything I didn't already know...

...which is that I have no curves.

With that out of the way, I could get down the business of finding my way around.

I found the gear shop. 

I found the smoothie bar.

I found the healthy power snacks

One of these days, I might actually exercise there.

Linking up again with Mama Kat for the prompt:
4. Write a blog post inspired by the word: found

Sunday, March 11, 2018

winner winner chili dinner

Thursday night, around 10 pm, Wolfgang started whipping up some chili.  Meego wondered why Wolfgang was whipping up some chili at 10 pm Thursday.  But I knew...

The great chili cook-off of 2018!

Wolfgang's workplace  has held an annual chili cook-off for the past several years, and Friday was the day for 2018.  The thought of a  bunch of engineers cooking chili doesn't naturally inspire high expectations, but apparently the results are quite tasty.  Winner gets a big sombrero.

And darn if Wolfgang didn't almost win that sombrero! 

He got first prize in the "unique" category and second place overall.  Got a trophy and medal, even.  Lookie!

As can be seen, they really pulled out all the stops on that 2nd place medal/magnetic disk clipped to a badge holder.  It's even "inscribed" on the back

He dubbed  his dish "Aloha Sweet Chili".  *Spoiler Alert*  The secret ingredient is pineapple.  Who knew??

He'd actually made it for us a couple of weeks prior to the cook-off, and we got to be the test kitchen.  The only thing he changed for the cook-off was, he let it simmer longer - thus the 10 pm cookfest.

I agree, it's very tasty and worthy of the prizes. 

I'd show a pic of the chili too...

but we ate it. 

Thursday, March 8, 2018

so let it be done

I make lists.  Do you?  Actual written lists?  On paper?

I think the act of writing stuff down helps me to remember it better.  Plus, if it's a to-do list, there's the satisfaction that comes from scratching things off.

So, let's look back on stuff I did this week, shall we?

  • I took a nap one day.  I was tired.  There was a futon.  I totally owned it.
  • Costco run, complete with the industrial sized pack o' toilet paper.  You Costco people know what I'm talking about!
  • Let the cat out.  And in.  And out.  And in.  And out.  And...
  • Rode my bicycle INSIDE a line of construction cones.  Rebel!
  • I was able to get three people to audit our P.E.O. chapter books without me being one of the three.  Woot!
  • Made and served up SO many nachos, tacos, burritos, fajitas... Oh, things are a-spicy in lunch lady land.
  • Got out my sewing machine and made two big shirts into two shirts that fit.  I'm kind of a big deal that way... with a small top.

Okay, so a few of these things weren't actually on the list, but gotta have some spontaneity in life too!  And as I type this, I see that I also wrote down to defrost the freezer.  Yes, it's written down.  It's not scratched off.  The first step is to acknowledge that you have a problem.

What's on your list?


Linking up this week with Mama Kat for the prompt:
4. List 8 things you accomplished this week!

Sunday, March 4, 2018

cleaning the swamp

This weekend  marked the end of my term as president of my P.E.O. chapter.

It feels nice to have that responsibility lifted from my shoulders, but at the same time, I have residual feelings of needing to " do all the things".  And there were certainly nice aspects of the position...

I'm sure I'll get used to being just a Plain Jane "member", however.  The wrap-up involved a lot of business getting taken care of, so I feel good about checking all those things off before handing the gavel over to the next victim president.

And now I'm thinking about things I said I was going to get going on once my 2-year Prez term, which was preceded by a 2-year veep term, was up... if only I could remember what they are?

Thursday, March 1, 2018

a date with a glider that wasn't a date and didn't have a glider

"My brother said he can't make it, but... wanna still go?"

My co-worker Jeff was standing under the glare of the porch light.  It was about 3 a.m. and pitch dark outside.  I'd been up for about a half hour getting ready.  I'd watched for him so he wouldn't ring the doorbell and wake my housemates.

At Jeff's announcement, I considered my options.  (a) go back to bed, or (b) say "what the hell" and go anyway.  I was up and dressed.  Jeff was there.  I chose (b).

The original plan was hatched earlier that week.  Jeff's brother had a glider, and Jeff was a photographer/hobbyist.  Brother asked Jeff to hike to the summit of a particular mountain and take photos of the glider as Brother glided around the summit of said mountain.

About what Bro had in mind
except he didn't show

"Want to join me?", Jeff had asked during our morning break stroll around the industrial park.

It sounded like a fun adventure.  Plus, I'd never been that close to a glider as it was actually gliding.  Plus, what else did I have to do that morning?

So there would be no glider, but we hiked that trail up that mountain.  Jeff had his camera and took a few shots.  We got to the summit and watched the sun come up.  It was a beautiful thing.  Like watching the world wake up.  The darkness gave way to the Denver skyline miles and miles away, with miles and miles of plains stretched out beyond.

Jeff snapped some pics.  I was wearing a jacket with my initials on it that I'd gotten from Junior College, and I remember Jeff commenting on the jacket and asking how I'd come to have it.  Then he took some photos of me.  I realize now that I never saw any of the photos.  This was long before digital cameras were mainstream.

We eventually hiked back down.  It was a beautiful morning with the smell of evergreens all around.

Back in civilization, we went to a Greek restaurant known for it's huge omelets.  We ate huge omelets and drank about a gallon of coffee.  I'm pretty sure Jeff paid.

That was one of my best dates ever.  Except it wasn't a date.

Was it?

Linking up this week with Mama Kat for the prompt:
1. A memorable date.